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Technology Foundation STW

Van Vollenhovenlaan 661
3527 JP Utrecht

Short description

The Technology Foundation STW is the Dutch funding agency for university research. Tenured university staff can apply for a research grant, provided that their proposal includes utilization: the embedding of the results in society. The STW actively supports utilization by involving market parties in the users committee. Structure In the Netherlands research funding is organized along disciplinary lines. Each branch of science and humanities has its own department within NWO, the Dutch research council. Within this organization the Technology Foundation STW has a special position. STW research projects can stem from any of these fields, although most grant applications belong to science and technology. Every other section of NWO cooperates with the Technology Foundation as soon as applications come into sight. Criteria The Technology Foundation supports research that meets two criteria: it must have high scientific quality and at the same time it must be directed towards practical application. For the last criterion STW introduced the term utilization. Tenured faculty members from universities can apply for a research grant covering material and investment costs, the cost of temporary personnel and foreign travel. Many STW projects present an opportunity to obtain a PhD to graduate students, but postdocs and technicians are also frequently appointed. The Technology Foundation uses a special method to assess project proposals. The procedure was especially developed to compare proposals from the wide range of different subjects and disciplines covered by STW. This includes fields like physics, chemistry, mathematics, microelectronics, mechanical engineering, medical technology, biotechnology and many others. Anything is welcome, as long as utilization is provided for. In view of the utilization aim the Technology Foundation developed a format for project guidance that has proven to be successful over the years. For every project a users committee is installed. This users' committee closely follows the progress of the work and advises the STW Board on matters of the evaluation after the first two years, especially with respect to utilization. Members of this committee have priority to claim the use of the knowledge developed in the project. Matters discussed in the meetings that take place twice a year, are confidential.

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